Real Estate Woes and An ALMOST Good Idea

We have a property that has been on the market for nearly six months now. It is sitting empty because we would really rather sell it than rent it. But we don’t want to give it away either, and in this tough market that puts us in a little bit of a rough spot. We’re not the only ones in this situation, and there are numbers to back this up.

Our contract with our realtor expires in a couple of weeks, and we’ve been discussing what to do next–rent the property until the market improves, drop the price, wait it out, try another realtor, try to sell it ourselves, etc.  We know the market is tough right now, so I think we are being pretty realistic about our options.  We’re also lucky that we have options–we don’t have to give it away.  We received a piece of mail Friday that may have helped us in this decision.

The company we have the property listed with is running a sale October 10-19. Their plan is to draw attention to the great buys available in the market with a national campaign. Sounds like a great and innovative idea! In order to participate, they’re asking homeowners to drop their price by at least 5%. And for the duration of the sale they are reducing their commission percentage by…


I realize this is a tough market for agents as well, but this company missed a great opportunity to show their clients that “we’re all in this together”. Yeah, I know their commission would also be reduced by the same 5%, but on a $200k listing they are asking the owners to give up $10k while they are only giving up $600. Why not give up a full percentage point, you know, just to show you are REALLY serious about moving these properties? Why not show you also have a stake in making deals happen?  Why not use this as an opportunity to build relationships and a reputation with clients that will pay off for years to come?

Why not view this as an investment in your business?

In this case, they may have been better off doing nothing.  Someone at the top of this company should check out Seth Godin some time.  This really puts the agents in a bad spot as well, since they have not control over the situation.

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3 Replies to “Real Estate Woes and An ALMOST Good Idea”

  1. drop it 5k and sell…sell..sell…

    you and i have talked about it, and i know this isnt a site to discuss specific issues, but since you brought it up…=)

    if you are not interested in renting, i would personally run the numbers. see what you could do with the money if you dropped it 5k or so, and reinvested vs. holding on and seeing what happens in the market if you still have it in another 6 months. many buyers are more willing to buy when they see places occupied (by renter in this case) because they feel they are purchasing a desirable unit.

    from what i hear the banks/mortgage companies are getting more tight-fisted with the money so your market is decreasing to people that either have the money/credit/capital (investors) or more credit worthy customers.

    my $.02 worth…

  2. Well, technically, the point of the post was the boneheaded marketing of the real estate company, not us trying to decide what to do. 😛

    But since you brought it up…

    Rates are crazy low and lots of inventory on the market. I’d love to be a buyer right now. Becoming less and less interested in being a seller.

  3. Reminds me of the Real Estate chapter from the book “Freckonomics”. It talks about exactly the same thing.

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